New Portable Unmanned Reconnaissance & Precision Lethal Strike Systems 

The Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) and precision strike drones from Red Cat will provide the industry with an alternative to conventional ISR/strike systems currently on the market By Joe Macey / 18 Jun 2024
Red Cat Holdings' New Portable Unmanned Reconnaissance & Precision Lethal Strike Systems 
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Red Cat Holdings has introduced its new family of unmanned Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) and precision lethal strike systems.

The announcement, made at Eurosatory in Paris, follows Red Cat’s LoI to acquire FlightWave Aerospace Systems Corporation.

Red Cat’s family of ISR and precision strike drones will provide the industry with an alternative to conventional ISR/strike systems on the market that are said to be high cost and non-retrievable.

Red Cat’s sensor-to-shooter (S2S) system for identifying targets with optional precision strike capabilities is differentiated from other systems with its low cost portable drones. The objective of this new family of systems is to meet the increasingly urgent need of the Pentagon’s Replicator Initiative for swarms of low-cost “attritable” ISR and surgical strike drones deployable in air, land, sea, and subsea environments.

As part of the new family of systems, Red Cat is introducing FANG™, a new First-Person View (FPV) drone with precision strike payload capabilities. The FPV drone is currently undergoing Blue UAS certification. The acquisition of FlightWave’s Edge 130 rounds out the family of systems, which will include all current and future Teal models.

Jeff Thompson, Red Cat CEO, said; “The entire nature of warfare and use of drone technology is undergoing a fundamental shift, and this new family of systems will completely disrupt the traditional ISR and loitering munition systems market.

“Warfighters will be able to choose the right combination of drones and payloads for their specific missions and have access to an ecosystem of tactical AI, computer vision, and machine learning software that can positively identify threats and then have the option to engage and eliminate those targets.”

Red Cat’s new family of low-cost and portable unmanned ISR and precision lethal strike systems includes three aircraft with complementary capabilities and a common Ground Control System (GCS) such as the Android Tactical Assault Kit (ATAK) for multi-vehicle command and control:

  • The Edge 130 Blue, a Hybrid VTOL system, can be assembled and ground or hand-launched in just one minute by a single user to capture high-accuracy aerial imagery with long-range autonomy. Weighing only 1200g, the Edge can fly for over 2 hours in forward flight mode, an industry-leading endurance among all other Blue UAS approved drones available.
  • Teal 2 and future variants are cost-effective, man-portable sUAS designed to “Dominate the Night™” that has best-in-class night vision, multi-vehicle control, and a fully modular design. Teal 2 has a flight time of 30 minutes and it is both Blue UAS Certified and FAA Remote ID approved. Used together with FPV strike drones, Teal drones can be used to provide battle damage assessment once a target has been engaged.
  • FANG™, an FPV drone with a flight time of 10 minutes (under development and undergoing Blue UAS certification), will add surgical strike capabilities. Warfighters can combine and deploy these FPV drones with lethal payloads and ISR drones based on the mission profile for seek and destroy capabilities.

George Matus, Red Cat CTO, said; “We are at the forefront of a new innovation cycle for the drone industry. Technology integrations and partnerships that connect and optimize this new family of systems will play a significant role in its success. Open architecture and established relationships with some of the leading hardware and software companies in autonomy, AI, machine learning and computer vision will enable us to expand our capabilities over time.”               

The new family of systems will require ongoing industry collaboration, underpinned by the Red Cat Futures Initiative. Both through Red Cat’s agile internal research and development, as well as partnerships, there is significant opportunity to optimize the family of systems with higher capacity batteries, C2 links, dedicated Electro-Optical (EO) and thermal payloads, and other accessories and decision support software. Additionally, Red Cat has the ability to manufacture these systems at a high production rate with repeatability to meet the demands of customers globally.

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Posted by Joe Macey Connect & Contact